How To Protect Your Dog From Outdoor Threats
25 April, 2018
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Guest Blog by Sloan McKinney

As pet owners, it is important to give your dog the necessary time outdoors for their physical and mental well-being. Unfortunately, the great outdoors also poses many threats to your beloved pet. Outdoor pests, wildlife and even poisonous plants can all be detrimental to your dog (or cat). Here are a few helpful tips on protecting your pet from these threats, ensuring their safety while they enjoy the outdoors.

#1 Make Sure Your Pets Are Up-to-Date On Vaccines

One of the first ways to protect your pet is to make sure they are up-to-date on all vaccines. Pests including fleas and ticks and larger wildlife can all carry diseases including rabies which can be life-threatening. Core vaccines including distemper, hepatitis, parvovirus, and rabies are all important when it comes to protecting the health of your pet. They will boost your dog’s immune system and give you peace of mind in knowing you have taken the proper precautions to protect your dog’s safety.

#2 Secure Your Fence

It is also important to regularly check your fence lines for damage. Replace missing slats, broken hinges or faulty latches so that your pet cannot escape and so unwelcome pests cannot get in. For instance, wandering wildlife like wild cats, coyotes and even bears could easily mistake a dog for their next meal and corner a pet in a backyard if they have readily available access. Prevent such an instances by mending any gaps or areas of fence vulnerability where dangerous wildlife could get in.

Also, consider keeping smaller pets properly secured by leashes while they are in the yard. This is because birds of prey like hawks and owls can be dangerous for smaller breeds of dogs and could easily carry them away. A leash could deter the bird, giving you time to take action, save your pet and prevent them from being attacked.

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#3 Proper Yard Maintenance

Another way to protect your dog from outside threats is to upkeep your yard. For instance, keep hedges trimmed so that wild animals do not take up residence. The same is true for overgrown lawns or piles of leaves. Mow your lawn regularly and haul away leaves to prevent reptiles like snakes from creating nests. Even overprotective birds in nearby trees have been known to swoop down on domestic pets and attack them if they have gotten too close to their nests. Prevent such instances by keeping up your yard with the proper care and maintenance.

#4 The Hidden Dangers of Plants

Also, be mindful of poisonous outdoor plants. There are many plants that are toxic to dogs if consumed. Such plants include lily of the valley, lilies, azaleas, rhododendrons, sago palm and other cycads. Such plants can result in a wide variety of complications including minor skin irritations to fatalities. Take note of such plants and what they look like so that you can keep your beloved dog away from them.

Similarly, keep an eye on your garden and protect it with the proper enclosures. Fresh fruits and veggies can represent a dream come true for scavenging animals like skunks, raccoons, possums or other small rodents that may attack if they feel threatened. Therefore, remember to remove fruits that have fallen to the ground to lessen the likelihood of visitors in your yard.

#5 Secure Your Trash Bins

Lastly, consider securing your outdoor trash bins. Trash cans full of food scraps can attract unwelcome critters who may not take kindly to barking or territorial dogs. Keep trash bins locked at all times or even consider moving them to enclosures such as closed garages to make sure unwelcome guests do not have access to them.

If you are concerned about the dangers of letting your dog or cat outdoors, there are many ways you can mitigate the risks they may face. Protect your beloved pet today from outdoor threats by considering any of these helpful tips to reduce your their likelihood of harm.

Sloan McKinney is a journalist based in Southern California. After writing about pop culture for a number of years, she has recently begun writing for a new audience. Inspired by DeAnthony, her cat, as well as her dog Max, Sloan now hopes to help other pet owners guarantee their animal companions happy and healthy lives.

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